So you’re thinking of selling your home? Whether you’re moving for a new job, starting a family, or simply upsizing or downsizing, there’s a lot to think about when putting your home on the market. In addition to finding the right real estate agent and setting a competitive price, it’s important to ensure your home is in tip-top shape before potential buyers start touring. Here are 12 things to do to your home before selling to help you prepare. After all, first impressions matter.
1. Deep Clean
This is probably the most important (and most daunting) task on the list. You want potential buyers to walk into your home and feel instantly impressed. That’s not going to happen if your home is cluttered or dirty. Start with your kitchen. Ensure the oven is spotless, the floors are mopped, and all surfaces are wiped down. Then move on to your bathrooms – scrubbing the toilets, sinks, and showers until they gleam. Don’t forget to dust all surfaces, vacuum all carpets, and mop all hard floors.
Once you’ve tackled the inside of your home, move on to the outside. Start with pressure washing the driveway and walkways. Then move on to cleaning the windows, gutters, and eaves. If you have any outdoor furniture, ensure it’s clean and in good condition. Do not forget your outdoor spaces, such as your porch, deck, or patio. Sweep them clean and remove any cobwebs.
If you have the time (and money), you may also want to hire a professional cleaning company to do a deep clean of your home. This will ensure that every nook and cranny is sparkling clean and ready for potential buyers to see.
In addition to deep cleaning your home, you’ll also want to declutter. This means getting rid of anything that is not absolutely essential. This includes things like extra furniture, knick-knacks, personal photos, and collections. You want potential buyers to be able to imagine their own things in your home, so it’s important to remove anything that could distract them. If you have trouble parting with things, consider separating them into the following categories.
Things to keep: In this category, include things that you absolutely love and cannot part with. This might include family heirlooms, art pieces, or sentimental items. You can store these things until you move into your new home.
Things to sell: In this category, include things that are still in good condition but that you no longer need or want. This might include furniture, decor items, kitchen appliances, or electronics. You can have a garage sale, sell things online or donate them to charity.
Things to trash: In this category, include things that are broken, damaged, or no longer usable. This might include old clothes, toys, books, or furniture. You can recycle some of these things, but most will need to be thrown away.
Once you’ve decluttered your home, you’ll want to ensure everything has a place. This means putting things away in closets, cabinets, and drawers. You want potential buyers to see that your home has plenty of storage space, so it’s important to keep things organized.
Consider hiring a professional organizer if you need help decluttering or organizing your home. They will be able to help you sort through your things and figure out what to do with everything.
3. Repair Any Damaged Walls
Another of the things to do to your home before selling is repair any damaged walls. The first step involves identifying any cracks, holes, or dents in your walls. Once you’ve found all the damage, mark it with a pencil so you can easily see it.
Then, start repairing the damage by filling in any holes or cracks with spackle. Once the spackle is dry, sand it down until it’s flush with the rest of the wall. Then, use a paintbrush to paint over any areas that you repaired.
If you have any large holes or dents in your walls, you may need to use a patch kit. These kits come with everything you need to repair the damage, including patches, putty, and sandpaper. If you have any damaged or unique wallpaper, you may also want to remove it. Remember, wallpaper can be a personal preference, so it’s best to err on the side of caution and remove it before putting your home on the market.
4. Repaint Your Home
Once you’ve repaired any damage to your walls, the next thing on your list should be repainting your home. This is one of the things to do to your home before selling because it can make a big difference in how potential buyers perceive your home.
When choosing a paint color, it’s important to go with something neutral. This means avoiding any bright or bold colors. Instead, opt for light and airy colors like white, cream, or beige. These colors will help make your home feel bigger and more open.
If you’re unsure what color to choose, you can always ask a professional for advice. They will be able to help you pick out the perfect color based on the style of your home.
Once you’ve chosen a color, it’s time to start painting. If you’re doing the job yourself, be sure to protect your floors and furniture from paint drips. You may also want to consider hiring a professional painter if you don’t feel confident doing the job yourself.
5. Update Your Electrical System
One of the other things to do to your home before selling is to update your electrical system. If your home is more than 20 years old, there’s a good chance that your electrical system needs to be updated. This might include things like replacing old outlets, updating light fixtures, or installing new switches. While this is not a cheap update, it is an important one. Potential buyers will not want to purchase a home with an outdated electrical system, so it’s important to make this update before putting your home on the market.
If you’re not sure if your electrical system needs to be updated, you can hire a residential electrical inspector to take a look. They will be able to tell you if your system is up to code and make recommendations for any updates that need to be made. Making these updates before you sell your home will not only make it more attractive to potential buyers, but it will also help you get a better price for your home.
6. Clean Your Gutters
The next thing on your list of things to do to your home before selling is clean your gutters. This is an important task because gutters that are full of leaves and debris can cause water to back up and damage your home. Not only will this damage be costly to repair, but it will also make your home less attractive to potential buyers.
Cleaning your gutters is a relatively easy task that you can do yourself. However, some realtors recommend hiring a professional to do this job. This is because they have the equipment and experience to do a thorough job. If you decide to hire a professional, be sure to get multiple bids before making a decision. Once your gutters are clean, you should also consider installing gutter guards. These guards will help keep your gutters clean and prevent water damage in the future.
7. Repair and/or Service Your HVAC System
The next thing on your list of things to do to your home before selling is to repair and/or service your HVAC system. This is important because potential buyers will want to know that the heating and cooling in the home are in good working order. Not only that, but a well-functioning HVAC system can help to make the home more energy-efficient, which is another selling point.
Some of the common things that you will want to have done as part of servicing your HVAC system include:
- Having the ductwork cleaned
- Replacing air filters
- Checking and/or changing the thermostat settings
- Checking for leaks in the system
A professional HVAC repair technician will be able to identify any issues that need to be addressed and make sure that your system is running smoothly. This can be a big selling point for potential buyers, so it’s definitely worth the investment.
8. Replace Old Carpets
Another one of the things to do to your home before selling is to replace old carpets. If your home has old, stained, or damaged carpets, it will be less attractive to potential buyers. Not only that, but old carpets can also make your home look dated. Replacing the carpets is a relatively easy and inexpensive update that can make a big difference in the appearance of your home.
When choosing new carpets, be sure to select a neutral color that will appeal to a wide range of buyers. You should also consider the quality of the carpet. It’s important to choose a carpet that is durable and easy to clean. This will ensure that it will last for many years and stand up to heavy traffic.
Installing new carpets is a relatively easy task, but it’s one that is best left to the professionals. This is because they have the experience and equipment to do a quality job. Be sure to get multiple bids from different companies before making a decision.
9. Install New Hardware
The next thing on your list of things to do to your home before selling is to install new hardware. This includes things like door knobs, cabinet pulls, and light fixtures. This quick and easy update can make a big difference in the appearance of your home. It’s also an inexpensive way to give your home a fresh, new look.
Be sure to choose hardware that is in keeping with the style of your home. For example, if your home has a traditional style, you will want to choose hardware with a classic design. If your home has a more modern style, then you can choose hardware with a contemporary design. You can also consult your real estate services provider to see what they recommend.
Installing new hardware is a relatively easy task that you can do yourself. However, if you are not comfortable doing it yourself, then you can hire a handyman to do it for you.
10. Repair the Roof
The next thing on your list of things to do to your home before selling is to repair the roof. This is important because a potential buyer will want to know that the roof is in good condition and does not need to be replaced. Repairing your roof not only serves a functional purpose, but it can also help to improve the curb appeal of your home and increase its value.
If your roof needs repair, you will want to hire a professional roofing contractor to do the work. They will be able to assess the damage and make the necessary repairs. Be sure to get multiple bids from different contractors before making a decision.
11. Update the Landscaping
Nowadays, most real estate developments have some type of landscaping. This is because potential buyers are looking for homes that have curb appeal. If your home’s landscaping is outdated or in need of repair, it will be less attractive to potential buyers.
Luckily, there are a few things that you can do to update your landscaping and make it more appealing. First, you will want to trim any overgrown plants and bushes. You should also add some color by planting flowers. Finally, be sure to keep the lawn neatly mowed and free of debris.
If you are unsure how to update your landscaping, you can consult a professional. They will be able to give you some tips and ideas on how to improve the appearance of your home on a budget.
12. Prepare All the Necessary Documents
The final thing on your list of things to do to your home before selling is to prepare all the necessary documents. While your real estate attorney can tell you what documents are required in your specific case, some of the common documents needed when selling a home include mandatory disclosures, deed, original sale contract, insurance records, and any outstanding mortgage documents.
Your real estate lawyers will also help you draft the final purchase and sale agreement. This document will outline all the terms and conditions of the sale, including the purchase price, financing terms, closing date, and any other relevant details. Once you have all the necessary documents in order, you will be one step closer to selling your home.
These are just a few things you need to do to your home before selling it. By taking the time to do these things, you will be able to sell your houses quickly and for the best possible price. If you are not sure how to do any of these things, then be sure to consult a professional. They will be able to help you through the process and ensure that everything is done correctly.